Could you join us to help 200 young people?

For the last 3 years, Braid and Craigalmond have run a successful partnership in order to provide Duke of Edinburgh’s Award expeditions for their eligible Explorers. Building on this experience, we have offered to extend it to all Districts in SES Region, and we are delighted to say that a further three Districts have come on board. In order to better reflect the increased coverage across the Region, Braid Craig has been renamed South East Explorer Expeditions (SEEE for short!)

Over the last month, we have been registering young people across the 5 participating Districts who are keen to do their DofE or Queen’s Scout Award expedition in 2021. We now have 182 Explorers and 10 Networkers signed up for their Bronze, Silver or Gold/QSA expeditions, and we have also increased the choice of expedition type available: hillwalking, canoeing or biking. Some of the young people also plan to do more than one award expedition as they look to make up for the lack of opportunities in 2020.

We are really pleased to see such an increase in interested participants, especially as many have been able to switch from their schools, who are not planning to run a DofE expedition this year.

Naturally, we will only be able to run these expeditions when Scouting guidelines for COVID enable us to return to face-to-face (minimum amber level) and we may have to adapt running of the expeditions to meet these guidelines. We were able to do this successfully last October when we delivered a Bronze and Silver expedition for over 60 Explorers, which did require us to not include an overnight stay.

Whilst we have placeholder dates for the expeditions from May 2021, our next task is to train the participants so they can enjoy the experience, learning skills in a safe, structured programme. This training is starting online now for the about 90 Bronze or direct-entrant participants, with the first session on 7th February, then weekly thereafter.

However, we cannot deliver the training and run the expeditions without leader support. We already have a small core team of leaders who have kindly committed to assist in 2021 but we do need more.

Therefore, we are calling on all adult volunteers across SES Region, whether they are on the uniform side or not, including any parents, to let us know if they are interested. These expeditions are fun, create great camaraderie, give an opportunity to learn new skills and create positive lifetime memories. And this not just on offer for the participants; adult volunteers get most if not all these benefits too!

Here are some of the roles that are available, and we are happy if people can give as little or as much support as they can.

  • DofE Leader – providing occasional guidance, support and encouragement to Explorers doing DofE at one of the Units
  • DofE Management – behind the scenes there is communication, record keeping, signing off progress – all of which can be done by anyone with a computer and basic skills.
  • Expedition Skills training – help out at one or more training session with expedition skills such as map reading, navigation, basic first aid, camping
  • Expedition Supervision – hillwalking experience and being part of the adult team supervising/supporting Explorers during the expedition
  • Quartermasters – help get equipment ready and allocate to groups

If you already have the experience and skills to support our young people, or are keen to learn some of these skills, we would love to hear from you. Also, if you are thinking of getting an Adventurous Activities or Nights Away permit in future, this could be a great chance to build the experience to do so.

So, if you are interested in knowing more details, we are planning an online meeting on the evening of the 18th February for leaders and volunteers. Please visit our volunteering page at Volunteering with SEEE to let us know how you are interested in supporting and we will send you the Zoom details to enable you to join us.

We have also set up a dedicated website www.see-expeditions.org.uk which we are constantly updating.

If you want any further information please do not hesitate to email enquiries@see-expeditions.org.uk and one of us will be in touch.

Many thanks and we look forward to seeing some of you on the 18th.

Simon Cocker – Deputy Regional Commissioner, Programme & Outdoor Activities

John Buchanan – Assistant Regional Commissioner (Explorers) & Regional Adviser DofE

David Newton – District Explorer Scout Commissioner, Craigalmond